(Originally posted June 2010)
I started writing February 1st of this year and haven’t really stopped yet. I had an idea and started writing one particular scene that is a pivotal point for the main character. I began making notes anywhere and everywhere I could, which proved tricky while driving, but for once I finally felt inspired to start a new story.
I will tell you now, I’ve never wanted to write the next great American novel, so if that is your speed, then my writing will definitely leave you wanting. I’ve only ever be interested in fiction that entertains, distracts or stretches your imagination (not to say that I won’t write non-fiction one day, but I doubt it).
For the first month or two I wrote like a mad woman; morning, night, during lunch, whenever I could find a spare or not so spare moment. It was amazing how quickly everything flew out of me. Yes, I knew some of it was probably utter crap, but I kept writing. I would edit or re-read along the way. I’m definitely not one of those people who can simply spit out a novel then begin editing. I wish! That would drive me insane.
It doesn’t have to be perfect as I go, but I need to feel confident moving forward. Of course, if in the end, I need to go back and change some things and have some re-writes for the good of the story, than so be it.
So after two months of pretty solid writing, I hit a few road blocks. 1) Real life required more hours of me than my standard 9-5 paycheck. 2) I was intimidated by my own story. I had some general creative ideas about the world I was creating and knew I would have to explore them further in the book. Once I reached that point, I took a break without realizing I was taking a break. I let real life get in the way.
Then, one day, I felt the urge and dug in. My characters kept talking, the plot kept moving and the details fell into place. I remembered that I didn’t have to create a whole new universe – keep it simple and rely on your characters. If they behave (and you like them – good or evil) then they will come through for you.
This brings me to today. I’m about 400 pages in, through the thickest parts of the meat and now having fun with the revelations. I’m building to my ending that’s not really even an ending. There is so much more for the characters that I know I will write another book, whether this one gets published or not.
Real life responsibilities are calling once again (I haven’t won the lottery yet, so I still have a day job). I will write more soon with more specifics on the story.